Texas Ballet Theater is ‘On Pointe’ with Classic Combination
(The evening show on Saturday, February 27th)
by: Kelly Fitzharris Coody
The Texas Ballet Theater, accompanied by the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Michael Moricz, put on a brilliant show this weekend at the Bass Performance Hall in Fort Worth, Texas. The show featured three short ballets, Allegro Brillante, The Concert (Or, the Perils of Everybody) and a stunning finale, Études.
Never have I had the experience that Texas Ballet Theater’s Classic Combination gave me on Saturday; while the dancing was impeccable and technically sound, it was so full of life and so spirited. The principal dancers and supporting dancers alike blew me away with their performances, keeping me on the edge of my seat.
“Allegro Brillante” started out the evening with principals Katelyn Clenaghan and Jiyan Dai exhibiting electric on-stage chemistry that resulted in a beautifully danced, short and oh-so-sweet 13-minute opener.
“The Concert” (choreographed by Jerome Robbins) was truly a treat. Impeccable timing and strict body control made this unique piece laugh-out-loud hilarious. Each dancer truly embodied their character while principal female Carolyn Judson nailed it over and over again with her fluidity, enthusiasm and technique.
“Études,” choreographed by Harald Lander, displayed the best dancing I’ve ever seen, hands down. Though the choreography was technically difficult, rigorous and complex, Texas Ballet Theater excelled; not once did I see a dancer physically struggle to land or to remain in fifth position while doing a grand plié in the background. In fact, the opposite happened. They danced it so beautifully that they ended up enhancing and enlivening the choreography, not the other way around. Male principals Jiyan Dai and Andre Silva danced in a way that I’ve not seen since Mikhail Baryshnikov. Like Baryshnikov before them, they made the choreography not only look effortless, but enjoyable.
Texas Ballet Theater has found a way to make classical ballet modern and relevant in a way that still maintains the integrity of the dance; which is exciting to watch. The only place I see this company going is up — and not just in their pointe shoes.
photo credit: Steven Visneau